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Thread: Need advice URGENT: Stranded in Atlanta

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Daytona Beach, FL
    Posts
    229

    Need advice URGENT: Stranded in Atlanta

    Hi all,

    Not sure if anyone will read this before the morning, but I'm currently stuck in Atlanta as my power steering in the SC just died. On my way back to Daytona Beach from a road trip through the Smokies I went over a bump and immediately lost Power Steering. Car is currently parked in
    my hotel parking garage in Downtown Atlanta. PS Fluid is pouring out as fast as I can add it, from the center of the vehicle directly above the rack & pinion assembly.

    Aside from the physical difficulties in driving without PS, would I be safe to drive it 6hrs back to Daytona? Or, if anyone is in Georgia who knows a mechanic open on Sunday, I'd be more than grateful to take a recommendation. I need to be back in Daytona by Monday morning for work, I'm just brainstorming my options here.

    Sorry if I've rambled...been one hell of a night.

    Joe
    Last edited by Roboplex; 01-05-2020 at 01:29 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Tinton Falls, NJ
    Posts
    1,623
    Driving that far with no power steering fluid will burn up the pump, so I would avoid that if possible. If it is pouring out that fast, the return hose likely either broke or fell off. I would pull the washer fluid reservoir to see if the return hose is still attached to the bottom of the pump, and it may be as simple as sliding it back on and refilling the fluid. Also if it does need a new return hose, you can use regular rubber fuel hose or transmission cooler hose, which you should be able to pick up at any auto parts store.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Roanoke, Virginia
    Posts
    3,356
    I'd drive it home. Given the age of the pump to begin with you'll likely be replacing it when the repair is performed.

    In my teenage years as a poor SC owner I drove mine for months in the condition you've mentioned. Purchase some Lucas power steering repair in it. It comes out like a jelly. It will run out but no where as quickly. I'd honestly say I drove mine like this for 6months and it didnt burn up my pump.

    -Tim
    Current Collection
    1994 Thunderbird SC - Auto converted to 5spd

    1995 Thunderbird SC - Auto

    1994 Thunderbird SC - 5spd
    1989 Thunderbird SC - 5spd - Daily Driver
    1990 Thunder/Cougar XR7 - 5spd
    1994 Thunderbird SC - 3v Project

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Daytona Beach, FL
    Posts
    229
    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Groth View Post
    I'd drive it home. Given the age of the pump to begin with you'll likely be replacing it when the repair is performed.

    In my teenage years as a poor SC owner I drove mine for months in the condition you've mentioned. Purchase some Lucas power steering repair in it. It comes out like a jelly. It will run out but no where as quickly. I'd honestly say I drove mine like this for 6months and it didnt burn up my pump.

    -Tim
    Ended up finding a mechanic who's open, the pressure line hose is completely ruptured. If it was the pump or rack that were bad I'd drive it home but since it's the hose I don't want to ruin the pump by driving it that far without fluid. I did try some Lucas I had in my trunk last night and it did nothing to help the leak. They're sourcing a part for me for it to be done tomorrow afternoon. Thank God hotels in Atlanta aren't too expensive

    Small price to pay for dailying this car I suppose
    Last edited by Roboplex; 01-05-2020 at 01:42 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Roanoke, Virginia
    Posts
    3,356
    Usually the hose fails because your motor mounts are shot. Just an FYI if you're not already aware.

    -Tim
    Current Collection
    1994 Thunderbird SC - Auto converted to 5spd

    1995 Thunderbird SC - Auto

    1994 Thunderbird SC - 5spd
    1989 Thunderbird SC - 5spd - Daily Driver
    1990 Thunder/Cougar XR7 - 5spd
    1994 Thunderbird SC - 3v Project

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Daytona Beach, FL
    Posts
    229
    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Groth View Post
    Usually the hose fails because your motor mounts are shot. Just an FYI if you're not already aware.

    -Tim
    Ok thanks! I'll give them a check when I get home!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    6,510
    I know it's probably too late, but it is possible to bypass the power steering pump with a shorter belt. I don't remember the size, it might be somewhere on the site. You will have to tie the existing belt out of the way so you don't have to remove the radiator hose.


    I have done this at the drag strip before, so I know it will work.
    Kurt K (e-mail)
    SCCoA Member #: 443
    '92 SC AOD -- 11.521s @ 116.748mph, 2.0 AR power
    . . . . . . . . . -- 13.547s @ 101.01 mph, only w/ bolt-ons
    '95 SC 5spd -- All Stock, except 17" Simmons wheels.
    '90 SC 35th Anny 5spd -- 3rd owner, 16k miles
    2 '89 XR7 5spd's -- on their way out, really!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Daytona Beach, FL
    Posts
    229
    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt K View Post
    I know it's probably too late, but it is possible to bypass the power steering pump with a shorter belt. I don't remember the size, it might be somewhere on the site. You will have to tie the existing belt out of the way so you don't have to remove the radiator hose.


    I have done this at the drag strip before, so I know it will work.
    Update:

    Thank you thank you for the recommendation!! After they got the part in they decided to quote me $680 for a damn PS pressure hose!! I called my trusted mechanic in FL and he said no more than $350 total. I think they saw my FL plates and my road-trip supplies and put 2 and 2 together that I was stranded so tried to rip me off. Jokes on them though, I went nextdoor to AutoZone and picked up an 85" serpentine belt and bypassed the PS pulley. Currently just north of Valdosta, looks like the T-Bird is gonna make it home!!

    Thanks again for the help, y'all are amazing!!

    Joe

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    6,510
    Quote Originally Posted by Roboplex View Post
    Update:

    Thank you thank you for the recommendation!! After they got the part in they decided to quote me $680 for a damn PS pressure hose!! I called my trusted mechanic in FL and he said no more than $350 total. I think they saw my FL plates and my road-trip supplies and put 2 and 2 together that I was stranded so tried to rip me off. Jokes on them though, I went nextdoor to AutoZone and picked up an 85" serpentine belt and bypassed the PS pulley. Currently just north of Valdosta, looks like the T-Bird is gonna make it home!!

    Thanks again for the help, y'all are amazing!!

    Joe
    Great news!
    Kurt K (e-mail)
    SCCoA Member #: 443
    '92 SC AOD -- 11.521s @ 116.748mph, 2.0 AR power
    . . . . . . . . . -- 13.547s @ 101.01 mph, only w/ bolt-ons
    '95 SC 5spd -- All Stock, except 17" Simmons wheels.
    '90 SC 35th Anny 5spd -- 3rd owner, 16k miles
    2 '89 XR7 5spd's -- on their way out, really!

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